RailCats Fall to Chicago on Opening Night
By Ryan Zimmerman, Gary SouthShore RailCats
Rosemont, IL – Though the pitching kept the Gary SouthShore RailCats within striking distance of the Chicago Dogs, hitting doomed them to a 4-0 defeat on Opening Day.
All three pitchers, Trevor Lubking, Josh Vincent, and Aaron Phillips, did not allow a single earned run in their eight innings of work. The trio surrendered just three hits while walking six and striking out eight against a Dogs lineup that belted 104 home runs and averaged 5.6 runs per game a season ago.
However, the RailCats lineup could not provide the run support to reward the back up their staff. They mustered just three hits and four walks, leaving seven on base and stranding the bases loaded twice.
Chicago scored all their runs in the fifth inning and sent 10 batters to the plate in the process. Following a leadoff single, a pair of errors plated the game’s first runs. Back-to-back strikeouts on the next two batters put the RailCats in a good position to hold the Dogs to just one tally, but three straight walks and a hit batsman improved their lead to four without putting a ball in play.
The RailCats had their best chances to strike in the fifth and seventh inning when they loaded the bases in the fifth and seventh innings. A Chris Burgess hit-by-pitch, Alec Olund walk, and Donivan Williams single gave them a shot to take a middle-inning lead with two outs, but a fielder’s choice the very next batter immediately quashed that threat. Two innings later, Williams singled while Olund and K.V. Edwards drew bases on balls to set up another two-out threat, but a strikeout against the ensuing batter bailed the Dogs out of another jam.
Both teams take the field once again tomorrow at 6:00 PM for game two of this Opening Week series at Impact Field in Rosemont, Illinois. Ryan Zimmerman has the play-by-play call on American Association TV as well as the Gary SouthShore RailCats Broadcast Network.